Discipleship Journal Reading Plan: Day 33

Mt 11:1-19; Acts 16:1-15; Ps 25; Ex 4-6

Psalm: “Lord, I give myself to You!” No matter what happens, God is good! He is good despite all that I may endure. He continues to love me despite my worst failures. He continues to strengthen me, when I have wasted the strength I have been given. May I pursue a life of integrity and seek Him!
Memorable Verses:
Psalm 25:7, 14, 16-17, 21
Thought Processes (From Fear to His Promises): vs. 1-3
David’s Requests: vs. 4-7
His Goodness: vs. 8-10
Requests (And Truth): vs. 11-22

Exodus: We have the same kind of concerns that Moses did. Moses isn’t the only one who asks God, “What if people don’t believe me?”. Moses was so intimidated and filled with fears. To step outside of his own securities–first to go back to Egypt, second to speak to Pharaoh once, third to speak to the Israelities, fourth to the overseers, then to go again to the Pharaoh when the Israelites refused to listen. Still, God called Moses to speak. God calls us to speak. People may not listen. Still, we are called to speak. This message is paralleling to the text in Matthew for today..Lord, help me (us) to speak boldly even when it is scary. Help us to remember we are not alone! In Jesus’ Name, Amen! (See the note below for Matthew 11:16: Fits the Pharaoh’s description)
Verses: Ex. 4:11-12; 6:5
Concern #1: Ex. 4:1
Concern #2: Ex. 4:10
“Why Me?“: Ex. 4:13
The Israelites Believed…and Worshiped: Ex. 4:31
Additional Hardship: Ex. 5:10-15
“Blame Someone?“: Ex. 5:19-23
His Mighty Hand: Ex. 6:1
Redemption: Ex. 6:6-8
Hesitation: Ex. 6:9-12, 28-30

Acts: Paul has Timothy join him in his journey. A young disciple—Timothy—joins Paul on his mission to share the Good News!
Lydia Believes and is Baptized: Acts 16:11-15

Matthew: People didn’t get it. They refused the truth. At the end of the passage, it sums it up. People didn’t see John and Jesus for who they truly were, instead a lie was believed—how the religious saw them. Instead of recognizing who John (the Baptist) and Jesus is—they instead criticized them calling one “possessed by a demon” (John) and calling Jesus as “a glutton, a drunk, a friend of tax collector and sinners”. The religious—those who were supposed to understand and have a heart transformation through repentance and coming to Jesus—they didn’t even come close to understanding.

Christ is trying to convey to them that John the Baptist is greater than any other human—because of the work he is about. He is the forerunner to the Messiah—the one God chose to use to prepare the people for Jesus’ message and ministry. And… the Kingdom of God? The LEAST in His Kingdom will be far greater than John the Baptist… By saying that last statement, it sums up a lot. Shows the work and redemption through Jesus Christ through the death and resurrection of Jesus. “But those in the Kingdom of Heaven, have the greater privilege because they have actually entered the Kingdom…and become partakers in the new covenant through the blood of Christ! (Study Bible notes for vs. 11)”

I wanted to write that Jesus told the people what we, as mere humans, would love to tell another who has criticized us or another–especially if they talked like that about the forerunner (John the Baptist). We’d love to tell someone that “________________ is greater than you will ever be”, but Jesus doesn’t even go there. (God is love.) Instead notice Jesus’ next statement, “YET, the one who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.” It isn’t about us. It is ALL about Him. If anyone deserved to put the crowds and religious in their place, it’d be Jesus–the King of Kings. He doesn’t remind us of where we have been, but reminds us of where we could potentially go. “All because of who He is… Beautiful things happen when we humbly come to Jesus with a repentant heart. <3 Trusting in Christ!

My Study Bible include these notes, which I find incredibly helpful.

11:16—this generation. The crowds and religious leaders who have rejected John’s and Jesus’ ministries. They are like selfish and stubborn children, always insisting on their own way. (emphasis is my own)

11:17—We played the flute…and you did not dance. The people rejected the Gospel because John and Jesus do not confirm to their expectations and do what they want.

The Change: Mt 11:4-6
John’s Status: Mt 11:11
The Generation: Mt 11:16-19
OT: Mal. 3:1

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